When we travel, I like to stop at antique stores, and my family indulges me. Actually, I think Man of the House enjoys it and Girl of the House enjoys it for about fifteen minutes. I'm usually hunting for blue transferware china, but other things often present themselves and ask me to buy them. Such was the case when we visited Girl Out of the House and That Boy down South over Labor Day weekend and when we went to my niece's wedding in the Midwest this past weekend.
We stopped in Sonora, TN (or was it KY?), a tiny farming town that appeared to be dying a slow death but looked like it was once a charming place to live. There were two ramshackle antique shops across the street from each other manned by friendly proprietors. We didn't find anything in the first shop, but the second yielded . . . a math book. Now, I don't usually get excited about math books (okay, I've never gotten excited about a math book!), and I almost missed seeing this one entirely. It was tucked away in a dark corner, the top book in a stack of old books, and my eye just caught the title: Mathematics: A Human Endeavor by Harold Jacobs. I gasped. This is a book I had thought about using with Girl Out of the House but never figured out how to fit it in and was still pondering for Girl of the House. When I've checked on Amazon the price was sky-high. There was no price, so I calmly and nonchalantly asked the man at the desk how much he wanted for it. "Oooooh, a dollar." I got the feeling he thought he was charging too much. "I'll take it," I said and coughed up my dollar. The book was a little moldy and a lot musty, but it's nothing that an Office Depot rebinding job and some airing in the sun won't fix.
My find from this past weekend has a more immediate use. I'd heard about Romertopf clay cookers and liked the concept. I like old-fashioned ways, and cooking in a clay cooker appealed to me. So when I spotted one tucked away on a bottom shelf at an antique shop in IL (or was it IN?) with a price tag of $22.50, it didn't take much pondering to decide to buy it. Man of the House is usually pretty indulgent when it comes to my buying cooking utensils. He likes food and he likes my cooking. :-) I roasted chicken and sweet potatoes last night (with a regular potato for Girl 2), and it was delicious! It was easy to prepare and easy to clean (so Man of the House tells me~he's a great dishwasher!) I can see using this frequently, especially as the weather cools down. As you can see, it isn't in perfect condition, but I didn't mind as long as it cooked well, and boy, did it! I'm thinking roasts, more chicken, baked beans, pork loin, even meatloaf . . .
I love the chickens, pigs, and other animals in relief over the sides and top!